Captain's Log: Operation Road Trip - Day Five

Last night after the kids fell asleep, Shawn and I stayed up and drank vodka sodas and ate cheese and crackers in the dark like damn adults (adults who are terrified the kids will wake up). We weren't bright-eyed and bushy-tailed this morning when Grady woke up at seven is what I'm saying. I finally pried my eyes open at 7:30 to see Grady fully dressed, shoes and all, waiting to head to Disneyland. 

Hours later (threeeeeee hourrrrrrs according to Grady) the four of us headed to the park. We didn't make too strict of a plan today on purpose. We had no idea how Poppy would react to the crowds or hours in the stroller. We were worried for nothing. She was a bit fussy from time to time (she is Penelope after all) but overall she handled her first trip to Disney like a pro.

Shawn and I traded off going on rides with Grady and we hit a few rides as a family. The Jungle Cruise was excellent but the Finding Nemo Submarine was too intense for Poppy. Grady's turned into a bit of a daredevil and can't get enough of the roller coasters. 

The highlight of today is a draw between introducing Grady to churros ("this stick doughnut tastes like salmon*!") and tonight's Main Street Electrical Parade. *salmon = cinnamon and no one better correct him!


We stayed in the park until closing and the rain didn't start until we left. It was a perfect day. There were hangry meltdowns (from all of us at different points in the day) and five-year-old attitude (it's SO HARD to be surrounded by so much cool stuff that you want SO BADLY but can't have because your parents aren't millionaires) but it was exactly what I needed. I'm exhausted, my feet are aching, but my heart is full. My little family can be frustrating at times but today reminded me that it's also a lot of fun. 


Grady crawled into bed tonight, naked but for his underoos because then he "can get dressed even faster in the morning." Shawn's going to have his hands full tomorrow. 

Captain's Log: Operation Road Trip - Day Four

We woke up to rain this morning. Not a lot of rain (and we're certainly not complaining after seeing pictures of all the snow back home) but enough that I decided to skip Disneyland today. Grady and Shawn have three-day park hopper passes but our plan is that Poppy and I will join them for only one day. I'm excited about experiencing Disneyland with Grady but I also wanted to let Shawn do his own thing (he and his dad did a Disney trip when he was about Grady's age and it's a special memory for him). And, to be completely honest, a quiet hotel room with my best gal is extremely appealing.  

The rain changed our plans but didn't dampen our spirits. It's easy to get caught up in our expectations but the reality is that Grady is five. He's impressed by everything (in fact, we went for a walk today and he told me the palm trees looked "quite impressive in the morning light." Oookay, kid.). As we drove the last leg of our trip last night, we told Grady he had to look for Disneyland. It was dark so he couldn't colour, he'd watched all the Rescue Bots episodes I'd downloaded for him, and we needed to keep him occupied. He diligently watched out the window and when he saw what he thought was Disneyland, he was so excited. "I see it! I see Disneyland! It's AMAZING! Disneyland is so cool," he exclaimed. As we drove by an outlet mall. Moral of the story: a little rain doesn't change the fact that Disneyland is the coolest thing Grady has ever seen. 

Grady and Shawn had a great day and lasted much longer than I expected they would. The rain is supposed to ease up tomorrow so Poppy and I will join them for a day of fun. And there's no driving planned until Thursday so the Captain's Log is suddenly less desperate. 


Captain's Log: Operation Road Trip - Day Three

We didn't spend a lot of time in Redding, arriving last night at 7 and departing this morning at 9, but I can confidently say that I don't feel the need to return in the near future. It was a convenient stop for our road trip. We had an excellent dinner at In-N-Out Burger (though I can now confirm that I'm a Five Guys gal at heart). Our hotel had free wifi. I'm grasping at straws trying to find positives.


We left Redding and drove over 900km to Disneyland. Spoiler alert: 900km is too much driving. We are all feeling fried and exhausted-but-full-of-beans. Grady has been such a trooper but even he is reaching his limit.

Poppy hadn't pooped since a few days before we left so today, on our longest leg of the trip, she had three diaper blowouts in her car seat. I'm slightly traumatized and also a bit annoyed that I'm going to have to spend her college fund on more wipes and diaper rash cream at Disneyland. (I packed EVERYTHING but diaper rash cream. She's never had diaper rash! Ever!)

The weather forecast is calling for rain tomorrow but I'm not complaining because back home is covered in snow with more on the way. And tomorrow? We Disney. 

Captain's Log: Operation Road Trip - Day Two

We arrived in Seaside long after dark last night so even though we could hear the ocean, we couldn't see it. When we opens our blinds this morning and stepped out onto the balcony, Grady was speechless. We stayed at the Best Western Ocean View Resort because I wanted to hear the waves crashing at night and it's right off the beach. The hotel is a bit dated but the room we stayed in had a gorgeous view and was clean. 

We bundled up and went for a walk on the beach (and to find coffee!). Grady hunted for crabs (and found only empty shells) while I tried to keep Poppy's face against my chest to shelter her from the chill. She was like a dog sticking its head out the car window, pulling against the baby carrier to push her face straight into the wind. 

It was the perfect start to our day. That and the amazing lattes we found at Beach Day Coffee.  

The rest of our day was consumed by driving 800km (hold me) down the I-5. Now, I've lived my whole life in two places: BC and England. I am not unfamiliar with rain is what I'm saying. But the rain we hit today was unlike any rain I've driven in before. It was coming down in sheets so heavy that the windshield wipers couldn't keep up, even on full speed. It definitely slowed our progress but fortunately the majority of our trip was dry. 

Grady has been an excellent traveller, keeping himself occupied with his doodle pad and crayons or sleeping most of today. Of course it's now 10:30 at night and he's still wide awake. We can only ask so much of him I guess. 

Poppy is definitely over being stuck in her car seat. Today she pulled the full plank when I tried to put her in after we stopped for lunch. I don't remember Grady ever pulling that move until he hit the toddler years. Our gal isn't afraid to let us know what she likes and doesn't like.  

We have another full day of driving tomorrow but hopefully the sportsball keeps people at home and off the roads. Grady is practically vibrating with excitement because tomorrow we arrive at Disneyland (DISNEYLAND).